Soothing places online to escape the hellhole that is 2018
Though the internet can occasionally feel like a very bad, high-key terrifying, downright vomit-inducing place to spend time, some parts of the web are, dare we say, GOOD. (No seriously, we swear.)
When life gets tough, social media’s got you down, or it simply feels like there’s no good news in the world, the internet can help soothe your soul — you just have to know where to look.
In order to survive in this crazy world, we all need an occasional lighthearted, mindless escape. We need puppy GIFs, we need videos of babies giggling and drooling, and gosh darn it we need to watch Kinetic Sand being deliciously sliced by a sharp AF knife.
So next time you’re feeling stressed, here are some beautiful corners of the internet to visit.
1. Reddit can be rewarding
Sure, Reddit can sometimes feel like a portal to some fresh kind of internet hell filled with rude comments and opinions on opinions, but rest assured the site has its fair share of joyful subreddits.
The actual word “eyebleach” might sound extremely painful and off-putting at first, but upon visiting /r/eyebleach you will realize it’s a magical place dedicated to shielding our delicate souls from the crushing negativity of the world. 🙂
Described as a “catch-all community for sharing links which are beautiful, happy, adorable or tastefully sexy,” the subreddit is a hub for the best parts of the web, like precious videos of animals that will wash your eyes of their sins.
From a sleepy corgi and a smiling cat to animals smooching and a pup surrounded by chickens — r/Eyebleach clearly has a wide variety of things so adorable you might cry.
While we’re on the topic of cheery subreddits, another noteworthy mention is r/aww, which, as you can probably tell by the name, is filled with gosh darn cute content.
Great place to be if you’re in the mood to look at some good lil bunnies, babies, penguins, turtles, and, of course, a bunch of Good Dogs.
Once you stumble upon a nice corner of Reddit, you can then use that subreddit to find other lovely places online. Check out the Related Subreddits area of the page to find subreddits more specific to your personal lighthearted tastes (like “Pig Gifs” or “Happy Cow Gifs.”)
2. A daily dose of design
For some people, the sight of cohesive interior design can be extremely soothing. It’s not weird, okay? Don’t you dare underestimate the healing powers of organized book shelves or matching couch cushions.
If this sounds like something that might appeal to you, feast your eyes on apartmenttherapy.com. Apartment Therapy explores all the best parts of personal decorating, offering design lessons, DIY how-tos, organizing and cleaning hacks, online house tours, generally helpful life advice, and more.
You can search for design inspiration by specific room, or try out my personal favorite feature, the color search, which prompts you to choose a selection of color palettes and then shows you a beautiful selection of design images focused on the hues.
3. Innocent Instagram accounts
Instagram is much more than a platform filled with overly perfect, beautifully filtered snippets of your friends’ lives that make you feel insecure about your own. You just have to know where to look.
Instead of solely using the app to keep up with others, try checking out some of these soothing accounts to unwind and escape from the usual pressures of social media.
Watching children ~do things~ can be a lot more soothing than it sounds. From children falling over stuff to babies making faces, kidsdoingthings gathers the cutest and most hilarious videos of kids on the internet into one convenient location.
For example, please enjoy this child laughing while holding a french fry.
Adam Hillman has dedicated his Instagram account to sharing soothing images of objects arranged in a very aesthetically pleasing manner.
There’s something so satisfying about watching time-lapse typography videos, and Instagram is the perfect place to find them. The @calligraphyvideo account gathers some of the most relaxing and impressive paint, pen, and water droplet lettering online and links back to the artists’ original accounts. ~*STUNNING*~
If you’re looking for even more calligraphy videos to put you in a trance here are dozens of other typography accounts to check out. Definitely look at these for hours instead of doing some other more important thing that causes you stress.
Kinetic Sand is a marvelous invention that can be molded into different shapes, crushed on a whim, and most importantly, cleanly sliced.
Therefore, this Instagram account dedicated to the visual brilliance of Kinetic Sand creations being manipulated is everything we need for a lovely stretch of relaxation.
And when all else fails, head for the search bar to explore some hashtags related to other calming online trends like soap cutting, cake decorating, slime, bath bombs, and paint blending. Does it get any better?
4. All about those animals
As we learned from exploring the happiest parts of Reddit earlier, cute animals can essentially turn any frown upside down. So here are a few other noteworthy places online to bask in the glory of furry friends.
Open Puppies: Honestly, just a bunch of random GIFs of puppies. The way things should be.
WeRateDogs: A very good Twitter account that will introduce you to many Good Boys (and the occasional sea slug.) Ratings will not disappoint.
5. YouTube FTW
YouTube is a top-notch place for distracting oneself with entrancing videos. Sometimes you just need to take a step back from your own life and watch other people do things like cook and assemble DIY projects. Or listen to some peaceful sounds for a few hours. It helps, trust us.
Is there anything better than watching life-size hands concoct miniature meals using teeny tiny cooking utensils? Debatable, but Walking with Giants is one of the many channels on YouTube dedicated to cooking up bite-sized food and it’s absolutely addicting to watch.
Spending the entire day indoors staring at the computer, as is required by so many jobs today, is truly the worst. And though you might not be able to spend the entire day staring out the window, you can get a nice view of “nature” through your laptop.
The Soothing Relaxation YouTube channel lives up to its name by pairing stunning videos of nature with calming AF piano, cello, violin, harp, guitar, and choir music. If you’re a fan of this might we also recommend sitting in front of the visually stunning Apple TV screensaver, the Nature Relaxation Films channel, or checking out some sunset time lapses.
Carving candles is a unique form of art that takes a whole lot of talent and is essentially impossible to look away from. So many YouTube channels show masters honing the pouring of wax, intricate design process, and professional carving skills. The gradually revealed colors and wax curls are a beautiful sight to behold.
Welcome to the wonderful world of kaleidoscope art, a thing you probably never knew you needed until right now.
An. Entire. Channel. Dedicated. To. White. Noise.
6. Places for positivity and meditation
Videos of cute animals and children are great, but sometimes you’re in need of some more general positivity and encouragement. Believe it or not, the soul-crushing internet can help you there, too.
Tumblr is a great place to perk yourself up, and what better way to soothe your soul than by browsing the site’s positivity page?
The hub for inspirational quotes, positive affirmations, wholesome memes and more is sure to help you take a step back from the negativity of the world.
Though the internet does offer places to help us de-stress, sometimes the best thing we can do is ~absolutely nothing~ for two straight minutes.
Donothingfor2minutes.com challenges you to mediate and reflect on your life for a full 120 seconds (!!!) without using the internet or touching your computer screen at all. Can you even IMAGINE?
A timer will begin to countdown as a calming beach sunset appears and the relaxing sound of waves crashing fills your headphones. And to ensure you don’t cheat the countdown will stop the second your mouse moves and prompt you to start over.
Though the internet is full of interesting content, both good and bad, it’s crucial to remember to look away from your screens, hydrate, and leave your houses every so often. And if all goes well, maybe you’ll even stumble upon a cute animal IRL.
Good luck out there, people.